National anthems of the Soviet Union and Union Republics

National anthems of the Soviet Union and Union Republics

The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and its constituent republics each had a national anthem (generally referred as state anthem).

The Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic had no anthem, and used exclusively that of the Union: the Internationale from 1917 to 1944 and the Hymn of the Soviet Union from 1944 to 1991.

Unlike most national anthems, few of which were composed by renowned composers, the state anthems were composed by some of the best Soviet composers, including world-renowned Gustav Ernesaks (Estonia), Aram Khatchaturian (Armenia), Otar Taktakishvili (Georgia) and Uzeyir Hajibeyov (Azerbaijan).

The lyrics present great similarities, all having mentions to Vladmir Lenin (and, in their initial versions, to Joseph Stalin), to the guiding role of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, and to the brotherhood of the Soviet peoples, including a specific reference to the friendship of the Russian people (the Estonian and Karelo-Finnish anthems were apparently an exception to this last rule).

Most of these anthems were replaced during or after the collapse of the USSR; Belarus, Kazakhstan (until 2006), Tajikistan, Turkmenistan (until 1997), and Uzbekistan kept the melodies, but with different lyrics. The Russian Federation itself had abandoned the Soviet hymn, replacing it with a tune by Glinka. However, with Vladimir Putin coming to power, the old Soviet tune was restored, with new lyrics written to them.

List of republics

  • USSR and Russian SFSR - Hymn of the Soviet Union
  • Ukrainian SSR - Anthem of the Ukrainian SSR
  • Byelorussian SSR - Anthem of the Byelorussian SSR
  • Uzbek SSR - Anthem of the Uzbek SSR
  • Kazakh SSR - Anthem of the Kazakh SSR
  • Georgian SSR - Anthem of the Georgian SSR
  • Azerbaijan SSR - Anthem of the Azerbaijan SSR
  • Lithuanian SSR - Anthem of the Lithuanian SSR
  • Moldavian SSR - Anthem of the Moldavian SSR
  • Latvian SSR - Anthem of the Latvian SSR
  • Kirghiz SSR - Anthem of the Kirghiz SSR
  • Tajik SSR - Anthem of the Tajik SSR
  • Armenian SSR - Anthem of the Armenian SSR
  • Turkmen SSR - Anthem of the Turkmen SSR
  • Estonian SSR - Anthem of the Estonian SSR

The Anthem of the Karelo-Finnish SSR was used for the Karelo-Finnish SSR before it was demoted to an ASSR within the Russian SFSR. Autonomous republics of the Soviet Union (ASSRs) did not have their own anthems.

External links

  • Audio recordings made by each republic's best national choir and orchestra in the 1970s-80s; also instrumental versions by the Brass Band of the USSR Ministry of Defence from the 1968 Soviet LP.

Related information


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